What Causes Low Water Pressure in the Whole House?

The water in your home allows you to do all sorts of tasks – wash the dishes, take a shower, keep the plants happy, wash clothing and quench your thirst. In the worst-case scenario, issues with your water can leave you without water access at all. However, there are other issues that may cause your water pressure to drop throughout your whole home. Even if your water is working, you may still experience issues from low water pressure. This can greatly affect your quality of life at home, making even the simplest tasks more frustrating. So what causes low water pressure throughout the whole house?

Most Common Cause of Low Water Pressure

One of the most common causes of low water pressure is that two plumbing fixtures are on at the same time. You may notice that if you are running the washing machine, your shower has less water pressure. This happens because your water supply only has so much to give at a certain time, and the water must divide between two places. The easiest fix for this is to simply wait until the washing machine is finished to take your shower.

If you have checked that only one water source is running at a time, there may be something else causing the low water pressure throughout your home. Here are a few more reasons you might consider:

Outdated Fixtures

As with any household appliance, water fixtures get old and stop working as well. Maybe rust, limestone or sediment has built up, obstructing the flow, or maybe the fixture has started to wear down. If water pressure is low in just a few related fixtures, this might be the cause, and it might be time to replace these fixtures.

If rust and lime are a significant issue in your area, you may want to consider installing a water softener system to prevent issues in the future.

Failing Pressure Regulator

If you find that there is no middle ground between low and high water pressure in your home, you might be dealing with a failing water pressure regulator. Not all homes have this, but if you do, it will be below your home’s front hose connection. Usually once the pressure regulator is set, it should not need to be adjusted, so if you find this is the issue, it may be time for a new regulator.

Closed Valves

Most homes have two different valves that can shut off water supply to the home in case of plumbing work or emergency. Check both of these valves; if for some reason, they are not fully open, it may be limiting the water supply to your home, causing low water pressure.

Plumbing Corrosion

If the entire plumbing piping becomes corroded, it may have a negative effect on your water pressure. This could happen with old pipes.

Clogged Pipes

If a pipe or multiple pipes in your home become clogged, the blockages could disrupt the water flow. To address the issue, you will need to clean your pipes or replace them.

Diagnosing the Home’s Water Pressur Problem

As you investigate low water pressure in your home, you first will need to take note of the scope of the problem. Does every plumbing fixture in the house have low water pressure? Or maybe the issue is contained to one floor or room. This information is important because it can help you trace the issue to the root cause. If only one fixture is experiencing the issue, it may be a simple fix, such as a leaky valve. However, if water pressure is low throughout the house, it may indicate a more serious plumbing problem.

To start diagnosing the plumbing issue, go through the interior of your home to check each fixture. This includes the dishwasher, sinks, toilets, shower and baths, and washing machines. You will also want to check outdoor faucets and hose hookups. At each fixture, test both hot and cold temperatures, noting if the problem only occurs in one setting. If the issue only happens when the water is hot, for instance, it may be an issue with your hot water heater.

Central Heating, Cooling, Plumbing and Electric

Are you experiencing low water pressure in your home? Contact the team at Central Heating, Cooling, Plumbing and Electric here in Kalispell, Montana, for more information about appointments to diagnose the problem.

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